by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to examine your heart and how to program your heart for success.

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By nature, I am an impatient person. I like things done yesterday, and the day before is even better. 🙂

Because God knew I needed to develop patience, He has generously given me countless opportunities to do so.

The Greek word for patience used in the Bible is hypomonē, meaning steadfastness, constancy, and endurance. The Hebrew word for patience, ὑπομονή, means to hold fast to one’s faith, to persevere under trials; not to run away.  We notice in Scripture that the word patience is sometimes translated as endurance and perseverance

Strong’s Concordance describes patience as the quality of a person “who is not swerved from his deliberate purpose and his loyalty to faith and piety by even the greatest trials and sufferings.” A patient person endures under trials and keeps pushing forward despite all obstacles. 

Perhaps you, too, struggle with impatience. If so, let’s take a short walk together through some of the reasons that patience is so very important to our growth in Christ and to living the Christian life in all of its abundance.

Why do we need patience? 

1–Patience plays a key role in our becoming spiritually mature. Without patience we will remain spiritual babies. The more spiritually mature we are, the more we can receive what we need from God. James says it like this: “Let perseverance [patience] finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1: 4; brackets mine).

2–Patience undergirds faith and is essential to it.  Strong’s Concordance states that patience is “a steadfast waiting for.”  Scripture instructs us to “continue steadfastly in prayer….” (Colossians 4: 2). There are many times we must wait in faith for answers to prayer. We need patience to do so.

3–Patience builds the kind of character that results in hope, and hope is essential to faith. “And endurance produces character, and character produces hope” (Romans 5: 4). “Faith is the substance of things hoped for” (Hebrews 11: 1). 

4–Patience is a fruit of love. “Love is patient” (1 Corinthians 13: 4). Patience grows out of love and depends on it. If we are not patient, we are not acting in love.

Being patient involves crucifying the flesh. It means dying to the temptation to be impatient. We cannot be patient in our own strength and power.

When a situation tempts us to be impatient, we must turn to Jesus and let Him be patient through us. This is how we live the Christian life in the face of every temptation. This is what it means to follow Christ.

My Prayer for You Today: Lord Jesus, as we face daily temptations to be impatient, let us remember that You live in us and that, as we turn to You, You will live out patience in us and through us. In Your Name we pray. Amen. 

Now, it’s YOUR turn: What have you learned about the consequences of being impatient? Please share your insights in the Comments box below. Thank you!


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If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“Is Fear Quenching Your Faith?”

“Is Regret Stealing Your Joy?”

“How to Recognize a Controlling Spirit”

“Sex and Soul Ties”

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How to Win at Being Patient

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

Guard your heart above all else, for it determines
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

NOTE: My latest book, THE DAYSTAR DEVOTIONAL, has just been released. Please see details at the end of this post. Thanks!

If you’re like me, you sometimes struggle with impatience. Whether it has to do with twenty minutes of holding on a phone call while being forced to listen to ear-pummeling music or dealing with an unruly child, we run into situations every day that try our patience. As much as we try to be patient, at times we fail–and fail miserably.

Man looking anxiously at watch

Impatience, at its root, is a wrong response to fear. The fear is that we will never reach the goal we want to reach or that we will miss out on something we really want or need. In other words, impatience is fearing that a need we have will not be met or a goal we want to achieve will never happen. This fear makes us want to control not only the meeting of our need or want, but also the method by which we meet that need or want.

For example, let’s say you want your child to do well at school. When he lags behind or doesn’t put forth his best effort, you grow impatient with him.  You pressure and push and pressure and push your child until you break his spirit.  Now, you are frustrated, and he is discouraged.

But what is the real issue here? Is it that you want your child to succeed? That may certainly be part of the issue. But what is the core issue? The core issue may be that you are afraid of looking bad as a parent if your child fails. So, the real issue is your fear of failing as a parent.

Once we discover the core issue or issues of our impatience, we will better be able to win at being patient.

So, how can we win at being patient? And win every time?

Here are two tips:

1–Ask yourself if the issue that is stoking your impatience is really the core issue. Most things that we think are the issue are only the symptoms of the real issue.

2–Ask Holy Spirit to reveal the core issue of your impatience. Once you discover the core issue–or core fear–you can then be set free from impatience.

Scripture says this about patience: “But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing” (James1: 4). The word perfect as used in this verse means mature. Patience is a sign of maturity in Christ. A patient Christian is a mature Christian. An impatient Christian is not.

Bottom line, winning at being patient is to renounce our core fears and to trust in God’s love to deliver us from them. As we are reminded in 1 John 4: 18: “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.Fear is a sign that we have not yet matured in love. As we mature in love, we will mature in patience.

In his wonderful book, Waiting on God (which I highly recommend if you struggle with impatience), Andrew Murray says this: “True patience is the losing of our self-will in His perfect will.” As we submit our will to God’s will, we will win over impatience.

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(Attitude) Writing for the Long Haul

Are you tired of waiting for success? If so, listen up.

We live in an instant society where we want immediate results. I have seen this phenomenon among aspiring writers. They expect success after the first submission, and they get depressed when that success does not come.

I grew up in what I call the Era of Delayed Gratification.  We were taught that success had a price and that, sometimes, that price took a long time to pay. We expected to succeed, but not right away. We knew it would take a while, and we were willing to wait while we worked hard.

We were the children of the generation that saved for 25 years before building their dream home so they wouldn’t have to go into debt. The generation that considered “a penny saved is a penny earned” and saved those pennies in big glass jars.  Amazingly over time, those pennies added up to hundreds of dollars that we then took to the bank.  We were the children of the generation that took their shoes to the shoemaker to repair instead of buying new ones and that wore hand-me-down clothes.  Of course, we were also the children of the generation where shoes and clothing were, as a rule, of much higher quality and lasted longer.

We were the children of the generation that knew how to wait for what they wanted, and we learned that lesson well.

Yes, like all generations, we wanted success, but we were not in a hurry to get it because we knew that success needed time to grow. During that time of growth, we learned valuable lessons–like patience, perseverance, and problem-solving. These lessons served us well not only before we achieved success, but afterward as well.

So be encouraged if you are still struggling to succeed in your writing. Remember: that the journey is as important, if not more so, than the destination. Unless you’re in this writing thing for the long haul, you may find yourself stranded by the side of the road.
Copyright 2014 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.

(Attitude) Persevering in the Slow Times

While all professions require a degree of patience, few professions, in my opinion, require as much patience as writing. We writers live much of our lives in waiting mode: waiting for a reply from an editor or agent; waiting for an acceptance; waiting for a royalty check.  It is imperative, therefore, that we develop the virtue of patience.

Patience is the attitude of waiting in total trust that God is moving in our writing career even though everything may seem to be at a complete standstill.  Patience is also the undergirding of faith, for without patience, we will never see our faith come to fruition. Far too often, writers quit just before their big breakthrough. Don’t let that happen to you.

Instead, persevere. Persevere during the good times when it is easy to do so, and especially during the tough times when it is not so easy to persevere. It is during the tough times of our writing career that we need most to persevere.

Scripture says this in Galatians 6:9:  “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”  Notice the clause “if we do not give up”.  Reaping a harvest depends on not giving up.

If you are being tempted to give up doing what God has called you to do, don’t! Turn to Him for a fresh dose of patience. If you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord, you already have patience inside you as one of the fruit of the Holy Spirit. So activate that fruit by drinking of the life of patience which is ours through Jesus Christ.